What Does it Take to Make a Digital Computer?
This seminar will explore issues at the intersection of philosophy and computer science. We will explain in accessible terms how the search for the foundations of mathematics in the late 19th century led to the exploration of infinity and to the development of formal logic. We will also examine how the investigation of formal logic led to some of the deepest mathematical and philosophical results (Goedel’s theorem and Church’s theorem) and how this led to the development of the computer. Finally, we will discuss some philosophical and social issues that arise concerning computers and robots. For example, can computers think? And what if we can make computers that can build even smarter computers? We will use the recent presentation of these matters in Logicomix. See: logicomix.com/en.